The Journal Register (Medina, NY)

Local Sports

December 27, 2013

Special meaning to Medina-OP contest

Medina Journal-Register — When I checked out the Medina boys basketball schedule before the season, one game immediately jumped to the forefront of my attention. When I saw that game, I immediately smiled.

That game is tonight. Medina vs. Orchard Park, in the first round of the Pendleton Lions Club Tournament at Starpoint.

Why am I so excited for a matchup against Orchard Park? Well, I went to Orchard Park. My family and I moved to Orchard Park when I was four years old. I attended elementary school there, middle school there and high school there. I proudly gave a high school graduation speech there as senior class president, and the majority of my memories up until I left for college took place in Orchard Park. 

I also played a little basketball at Orchard Park — albeit not with much success. Believe it or not, I tried out for the JV basketball team as a high school sophomore after being cut from the bowling team. I had no expectations of making the team, but I had a decent week of tryouts, and I was thrilled to see my name on the final roster. 

Cut from the bowling team, and on to the basketball team. If anyone else has had the same experience, I would love to meet them.

Although I didn’t see the court much — I was one of the last three players off the bench —it was a great experience, and my winter on the basketball team was probably the healthiest few months of my life. I was the slowest guy on the team to start the season, but by the end, I was one of the fastest.

Our coach, Matt Lexner, was a character, and we loved playing for him. Sometimes we would do nothing but scrimmage in a practice, and sometimes we would spend 20 minutes practicing half-court shots.

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